Making Healthy Choices
Make healthy choices for a fitter you!
Calorie Needs & Losing Weight

The number of calories you need daily depends on factors such as height, weight, gender, age and activity level. Find out how much you need to maintain your weight from the table below.

Table: Estimated Calorie Requirements (in Kilocalories)
 
Activity Level
Gender
Age (years)
Sedentary Moderately Active
Active
Female 19-30
2,000 2,000-2,200 2,400
31-50
1,800 2,000 2,200
51+
1,600 1,800 2,000-2,200
Male 19-30
2,400 2,600-2,800 3,000
31-50
2,200
2,400-2,600 2,800-3,000
51+
2,000
2,200-2,400 2,400-2,800
Sources: U.S. Department of Health & Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture

Healthy weight loss occurs slowly and steadily. Aim to lose 0.5 to 1 kilogram a week. To do this, you need to burn 500 to 1,000 calories each day, through a low-calorie diet and regular exercise.

For example, if you are a 31-year-old female office worker with an inactive lifestyle, you would need about 1,800 calories daily to maintain your weight. To lose 0.5 to 1 kilogram per week, you would need to reduce your daily calorie intake by 500 to 1,000 calories or burn off this number of calories through exercise daily.

Make informed choices about the food and drinks you consume. Here’s a list of the calories in common foods and drinks.
Item Quantity No. of Calories
Beverages
Milkshake 1 big cup (900ml) 2,310
Orange juice 1 cup 110
Apple juice 1 cup 110
Café latte 1 cup 220
Cola 1 can (335ml) 140
Milk 1 cup (250ml) 150
Beer 1 cup 140
Fast Food
Breakfast set including muffin, beef patty, scrambled egg, pancakes and hash brown 1 set 1,140
Tuna submarine sandwich Regular serving 1,420
Double beef and bacon burger 1 1,680
Tuscani pasta chicken alfredo ¼ serving 620
Pizza 2 large slices 860
Fried chicken drumstick 1 400
Fries 1 large serving 440
Cooked Food
Cantonese fried noodles 1 serving 690
Rice 1 bowl (180g) 240
Fried egg 1 90
Snacks
Chicken Caesar salad 1 serving 990
Chocolate sundae 1 cup 320
Cheesecake 100g 320
Condiments
Vegetable oil 1 tbsp (14g) 130
Sugar 1 tsp (4g) 15
Salt 1 tbsp (18g) 0
Ground white pepper 1 tbsp (7g) 21
Tomato sauce 1 tbsp (15g) 15
Chili sauce 1 tbsp (15g) 3
Mayonnaise 1 tbsp (15g) 110
Mustard 1 tsp (5g) 3
Soy sauce 1 tbsp (18g) 11
Source: www.nutritiondata.com

Low Calorie Food

Instead of fried food or foods high in sugar, choose fruits and vegetables, and boiled or steamed food. They are low in calories and are more nutritious. For example, instead of eating a slice of cheesecake, choose an apple to satisfy hunger pangs. Below are some examples of such foods and the amount of calories they contain.

Item Quantity No. of Calories
Boiled chicken breast 100g 140
Salmon 100g 200
Boiled celery 100g 20
Boiled Chinese cabbage 100g 10
Boiled Chinese kale 100g 20
Apple 1 60
Mango 1 140
Kiwi fruit 1 50
Banana 1 80
Rock melon 240g 80
Source: www.nutritiondata.com

Calorie Burnt

Be sure to include exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle. While eating healthily helps to reduce calorie intake, exercise burns calories and maintains the immune system while you are losing weight. Calories burned during exercise are affected by the intensity of workout and your weight, level of fitness and metabolism. The following table lists the number of calories burned per hour for different body weights.

 
Body Weight
Activity (1 hour) 59kg 70kg 86kg
Bicycling, <10 mph, leisure 236 281 345
Dancing 266 317 388
Jogging 413 493 604
Hatha yoga 236 281 345
Swimming 354 422 518
Tai chi 236 281 345
Aerobics, general 354 422 518
Badminton, social 266 317 388
Basketball, nongame 354 422 518
Bowling 177 211 259
Running 472 563 690
Soccer 413 493 604
Squash 708 844 1,035
Table tennis, ping pong 236 281 345
Tennis 413 493 604
Walking, 4 mph, very brisk pace 236 281 345

Other tips for safe, effective weight loss:
Drink water and eat high-fiber fruits and vegetables before meals, so that your body is hydrated and receives the nutrients it needs most first. You will also feel fuller before you start your meal and will eat less.
Start off your meal by drinking soup, then by eating rice and side dishes.
Get enough sleep so that your body burns off enough calories during sleep.
Try to avoid oil when cooking; each tablespoon of vegetable oil contains 130 calories!